The Fighting Illini take on Northwestern in Season Opener

The Fighting Illini swimming and diving team will open the 2014-15 season against in-state rival Northwestern this Friday at 5 p.m. CT in Evanston, Ill.

“They always have some very talented kids on their team,” head coach Sue Novitsky said. ” Last year it was a very close meet and I think it’s going to be a tight one this year. They’re very well coached.”

Northwestern holds a 17-7 lead in the all-time series, including a 166-133 victory over the Illini in last year’s competition. This meet marks the first contest of the season for the Wildcats, who finished tenth in the Big Ten in 2013-14.

The Illini will come into the meeting riding the success of the Orange and Blue intra-squad meet in which they set four meet records. The team hopes to continue their early success into the regular season.

“They have some strong kids in certain events, but we think we can put up a good match-up against them,” Novitsky said. ” I think it’s going to come down to those fourth and fifth place spots, where getting 2 points or 1 point make that big swing come the end.”

College Swimming News courtesy of the University of Illinois.

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About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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